Natti Natasha dropped her second studio album late September 2021, named 'Nattividad,' which is a ... [+] nod to her name, her daughter's name, and a period of rebirth.Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows
Natti Natasha was working on her second studio album during the pandemic when she found out she was pregnant. The reggaetón icon found new energy in her music—as well as some new challenges, too.
Nattividad, the name of her album, merges her and her daughter Vida’s name. The album title also mimics “natividad,” the Spanish word for nativity. The Dominican artist wanted this album to signal a rebirth of herself and her artistry.
“It was a beautiful process because I got to know myself way more,” Natti said. “I got to enjoy my pregnancy while I was doing what I love.”
Natti describes her music as honest and explicit, so when she became a mother, she faced an extra dilemma. She questioned how much she’d be accepted and how much she’d be shunned for presenting herself sexually while pregnant. Ultimately, she stuck to being herself and not changing her musical style.
“This is the time to challenge myself, as a person in general and as a woman,” she said. She also wanted to give a message “to women and to girls that you can be happy in every aspect. You can be yourself. You can be successful in your career, and you can have family, if that’s what you want.”
Following in the footsteps of Beyoncé and Cardi B’s performances while visibly pregnant, Natti performed with a gem-embellished belly on the Jimmy Fallon Tonight Show just days before her due date.
Natti’s decision to stay true to herself is probably rooted in one of her early influences: Lauryn Hill.
She says she loved listening to Lauryn Hill as a young girl and especially loved “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” from the infamous Miseducation album. One thing about the Fugees singer, Natti said, is that she expressed what she wanted to.
“[Lauryn] wasn't worried about doing any commercial songs. She was just focused on saying what was going on in the world, what was going on in society. It could be about politics, or it could be literally just about love or about her son,” Natti said.
For Natti, the thought of changing her music because she was pregnant reflected a familiar pressure to change herself in order to make others more comfortable.
“When we’re little girls, you don't see you have a limit. But when you start growing up, you see that people want to give you a limit,” Natti said. “I looked back and I'm like, well, [Lauryn] didn't accept it.”
While making this album during the pandemic, Natti wanted to avoid sad songs and make it more upbeat. As she typically does with her music, she also wanted Nattividad to empower women and girls. With her own daughter now, this is even more personal.
Making this album and sticking to her musical essence was a form of self-love for Natti. She has learned that “self-love is accepting who you are, which is hard to do because it's a process, because you get to know who you are when you make mistakes.”
As she enters the next era of her career, she’s still focused on music but will be setting her sights on even more things now, like acting and building her own beauty and fashion brand.
“I want to make sure that when I die,” Natti said, “I did everything I wanted to do.”